American Heritage® Dictionary of the English Language, Fourth Edition
- adj. Widely or commonly occurring, existing, accepted, or practiced. See Synonyms at prevailing.
Century Dictionary and Cyclopedia
- Of such a character as to prevail; superior in power or might; controlling; ruling.
- Influential; possessed of moral weight or authority.
- Effective; efficacious; productive of results, particularly of results desired.
- Wide-spread; current; of wide extent, occurrence, practice, or acceptance: as, a prevalent belief; a prevalent custom.
- Synonyms and Prevalent, Prevailing, Predominant, Ruling. Ruling in this connection refers to moral ascendancy: as, a ruling fashion set by a reigning belle. Prevalent and prevailing are sometimes the same, and in two senses, that of exceeding in strength, as the prevalent (or prevailing) opinion was against action, and that of existing widely, as scarlet fever is a prevalent (or prevailing) distemper. The habitual is more likely to be expressed by prevalent; the present or actual, sometimes the temporary, by prevailing: as, the prevailing fashion. The words are weaker and less exact than ruling; predominant is the strongest of all. Predominant implies activity, and actual or figurative effort after leadership on the part of that which is predominated over: as, a predominant faction; a predominant opinion is one that seems to put down all others.
- Common, Prevalent, etc. See common.
GNU Webster's 1913
- adj. Gaining advantage or superiority; having superior force, influence, or efficacy; prevailing; predominant; successful; victorious.
- adj. Most generally received or current; most widely adopted or practiced; also, generally or extensively existing; widespread; prevailing.
- adj. most frequent or common
- From Latin praevalentem. (Wiktionary)
- Middle English, very strong, from Latin praevalēns, praevalent-, present participle of praevalēre, to be stronger; see prevail. (American Heritage® Dictionary of the English Language, Fourth Edition)
““Complementary” is a term prevalent in England, and carries the implication that unconventional therapies can coexist side by side with mainstream medicine.”
“The most prevalent is the "thought, word, and deed" motif, but I've also found what appear to be alliterating triads (of anatomical features, interestingly) in at least one OE prayer.”
“How prevalent is social media (social networking sites, blogs, etc.)?”
“However, one question that has become increasingly prevalent is whether the impending release of Grand Theft Auto IV (on April 29th), the fourth edition of Rockstar's incredibly successful hyper-violent game franchise, will have an impact on the performance of Iron Man (out in theaters on May 2nd).”
“When I used the word prevalent, I was using it to say that racism, as something that could possibly be quantified, is, in my experience, at similar levels than it has been over the last few decades.”
“She details a legend prevalent among anusim, a Hebrew word meaning "people who suffered forced baptism.”
“In this latter capacity he has become, amongst other things, a sort of Jiminy Cricket or social conscience, pointing out the seamy side of certain prevalent business practices.”
“And so prevalent is Chinese ownership of convenience stores that Spaniards routinely refer to the shops themselves as "chinos.”
“From here we can look out upon the future, a future which will, according to this story, always involve some sort of "return" -- a word prevalent throughout The Transition Handbook and infused within the Transition imagination of re-skilling, relocalization, rebuilding - as we descend from these great but unsustainably rarified heights to a world built on a more human scale.”
“The bold action has been going against the idea prevalent among medics, to show that sugar does not necessarily have to be swallowed to act on glucose levels: by simple contact with the tissues in the oral cavity, particularly those under the tongue, a rapid elevation of blood sugar is observed, in fact even faster acting than if the sugar was swallowed.”
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